I took the kids to the library on Friday. Every month on the first weekend, the local library has a book sale. Libraries regularly weed books. This means they pull out old books, or books they have too many copies of and not enough interest (like most libraries don't need 10 copies of the last Harry Potter book anymore), or they have books are donated to them but they don't need or want them.
I have found some great deals at our library weekend sales. Last month I got a Richard Peck book called Fair Weather. This month I found one called A Crooked Kind of Perfect by Linda Urban.
It's about a girl named Zoe who is 10 and has dreams of being a concert pianist. All she needs is a piano. Her mother works all the time. Her father is a kind man, but has some major anxiety issues and never leaves the house if he can help it. Zoe is certain if she had a piano, she would be a prodigy and play in Carnegie Hall before she is 12. Instead of a piano, her father buys her an organ. The organ purchase comes with free lessons for six months. Zoe is quite disappointed.
She takes the lessons and practices the music her teacher assigns her. After a couple of months, her teacher realizes that Zoe is a hard worker and gives her some new music with the expectation for her to give her first recital at an organ competition. Zoe has to practice hard and faces the butterflies in her stomach when it comes to her first performance. She meets other kids her age at the competition who all play the organ.
The story is written from Zoe's point of view and it is almost journal entry like. There are many chapters, but they are more like journal entries. Some of them are very short, only 3-4 words long. Others are longer, like when she describes going to a birthday party. It's a nice book. Not too sweet, but you like all the characters (except for the snobby girls, but there is a set of those in every story about a middle-of-the-road girl like Zoe.)
The story of Zoe and her dreams of being a pianist and her reality of having a wheeze-bag organ is a different kind of fun story. When it comes to the school drama, it is pretty standard formula. She doesn't have any friends at school. Well, she had a friend, but the friend is from a rich family and she drops Zoe so she can be friends with another girl who lives in the same rich neighborhood. The only kid at school who likes Zoe is the weirdest boy in the class. He calls her Goober and doesn't have many friends himself. In the end, they become good friends.
It was a fun read and I read the entire book in an evening, so it was quick reading too. I like quick reading books. I don't have to think to hard about the story. It's just a sit back and relax kind of story. Nice.